The Academic Achievement Award was originally established by the College Football Association in 1981 and was presented annually by the Touchdown Club of Memphis through 1997. The award recognized the CFA-member FBS institution with the highest graduation rate among members of its football team.
With the disintegration of the CFA, the American Football Coaches Association stepped in to continue to present the award, along with long-time partner, the Touchdown Club of Memphis. The criteria for the AFCA’s Academic Achievement Award is based on the highest NCAA Graduation Success Rate, at least 15 students in the GSR Cohort, and a Federal Graduation Rate of 75 percent or better.
Since 2008 Allstate Insurance Company has been the title sponsor of the AFCA Good Works Teams, which honors football student-athletes for exemplary community service.
Two 11-man teams are selected for the Allstate AFCA Good Works Teams®, one team from the Football Bowl Subdivision and a second team combined from the Football Championship Subdivision, NCAA Division II and III and the NAIA. The AFCA has been overseeing the selection of the teams since 1997, taking over from the College Football Association (now defunct), which originated the concept in Division I-A in 1992. The AFCA expanded the program to include all four-year collegiate divisions.
Nominations are submitted early in the summer by sports information directors around the country. Nominees must be actively involved and committed to working with a charitable organization, service group or community service and maintain good grades.
Candidates must display sincere concern and reliability, while also having made a favorable impression on the organizations with which they are involved. Athletic ability is not a criterion.
Since 1986, the winner of the UPI or Amway Coaches Poll has received the AFCA Coaches' Trophy, presented by Amway. The trophy — valued at $30,000 — features a football made of Waterford crystal and an ebony base. After its presentation, the original trophy is displayed on the campus of the winning school.
Leading direct seller, Amway, became the presenting sponsor of the Coaches' Trophy in 2014. The trophy will be awarded to the No. 1-ranked team, and national champion, in the Amway Coaches Poll following the conclusion of the college football season.
The Coaches’ Trophy was first presented to the winner of the UPI Coaches’ Poll in 1986, when it was sponsored by the Gerrits/Pepsi Cola Foundation. McDonalds presented the trophy from 1991 to 1993. From 1994 to 2001, the trophy was presented by Sears as part of its Collegiate Champions program. Circuit City was the sponsor of the trophy in 2002, then ADT Security Services took over the sponsorship from 2003 to 2005. ADT Security Services sponsored the trophy from 2003-2005, followed by Dr. Pepper from 2009-13.
The AFCA also awards trophies to the national champions in NCAA Divisions FCS, II and III and the NAIA, along with plaques to all AFCA-member coaches whose teams win conference championships, or for those not affiliated with a conference and qualify for the playoffs in their respective NCAA or NAIA divisions.
Since 1945, the American Football Coaches Association has selected an All-America team. What makes this team special is that it is the only one selected exclusively by the men who know the most about the players, the coaches themselves.
The AFCA currently selects an All-America team in five divisions: Football Bowl Subdivision, Football Championship Subdivision, Division II, Division III and NAIA. Starting in 2016, there are now two 25-player teams is chosen in each division.
Four of the five AFCA divisions have an All-America Selection Committee consisting of a committee chairman, a district representative head coach from each of the AFCA districts in each division and two committeemen in each district who are also head coaches. The FBS Coaches' All-America Team is currently selected by an on-line vote and does not have a selection committee.
The selection committees in each division conduct a conference call to select the team. The committee chairman and the district representatives are on the call. The district committeemen are not. Prior to the call, the district chairmen and his committeemen are responsible for gathering information on worthy players in their districts.
In 2002, the American Football Coaches Association and the American Football Coaches Foundation decided to implement a national award for high school head coaches. Since this award is so prestigious, we ask state high school coaches associations to nominate the most deserving head football coach in their organization.
The AFCA and The Foundation take great pride in nationally recognizing a high school football head coach who, for a lifetime, has had a powerful influence on his staff, players, and his community.
The Amos Alonzo Stagg Award is presented by the American Football Coaches Association to the individual group or institution whose services have been invaluable to the advancement of the game of football.
The Stagg Award Committee presents the nominee to the Board of Trustees, which endorses the selection of the winner. The award is named in honor of a man who was instrumental in founding the AFCA in the 1920s. He is considered one of the great innovators and motivating forces in the early development of the game of football. The plaque given to each recipient is a replica of the one given to Stagg at the 1939 AFCA convention in tribute to his 50 years of service to football.
The AFCA Trailblazer Award was created to honor early leaders in the football coaching profession who coached at historically black colleges and universities. For a five-year period, the Trailblazer Award will be given to an individual who coached in a certain decade. The inaugural winner coached in the decade from 1920 to 1929, with the five-year cycle ending in 2008 and a winner coming from the 1960-1969 decade. In 2009, the cycle started over with a winner coming from the decade between 1920 and 1929.
The Tuss McLaughry Award is given to a distinguished American (or Americans) for the highest distinction in service to others. It is named in honor of DeOrmond "Tuss" McLaughry, the first full-time secretary-treasurer of the AFCA and one of the most dedicated and influential members in the history of the Association.
The award was established in 1964. The recipient is endorsed by the AFCA Board of Trustees after being nominated by the McLaughry Award Committee.
McLaughry played a leading role in the development of the AFCA while at the same time establishing a reputation as a successful head coach at some of the most prestigious academic schools in the East. He worked diligently throughout his lifetime to advance the best interests of the football coaching profession.